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Hollywood's most powerful agent suggests actor strike could go on for months
Photo: © ANP

Hollywood's most powerful agent suggests actor strike could go on for months

Hollywood's most powerful agent suggests actor strike could go on for months
Photo: © ANP

Ari Emmanuel, one of the most powerful agents and executives in Hollywood, has suggested that the actor and writer strike could go on for months.

Since 2 May 2023, several productions both in film and television have been impacted by the strike of the Writers Guild of America, who were subsequently joined by The Screen Actors Guild - American Federation of Television and Radio Artists who have also gone on strike.

The two main issues the actors have are residual payments and the emergence of AI that could potentially replace performers. 

Emmanuel, the CEO of media juggernaut Endeavour, provided an update to investors this week. He said actors, writers and studios have “real issues to work through” that will take “months not days” to solve.

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“We continue to stand with our clients, advocate on their behalf and push for a resolution that protects their creative and commercial interests," he continued.

On the same conference call, Endeavour Chief Financial Officer Jason Lublin, revealed that the strikes were costing the company $25 million per month in revenue.

This is currently the first time that both actors and writers have been on strike at the same time since the 1960s. Actors alone went on strike in the 1980s and that temporary shutdown on productions in Hollywood lasted three months.

Bryan Cranston takes on Disney

One of the targets for the anger of the performers is Disney CEO Bob Iger, who claimed that the strikes were "disturbing" and explained that the demands from the actors were simply too high.

In 2021 alone, Iger earned $45 million, according to Variety.

Bryan Cranston is one of a number of actors who are protesting, and Iger was the target of an impassioned speech on Broadway.

"I know, sir, that you look (at) things through a different lens," the Breaking Bad actor said.

"We don't expect you to understand who we are. But we ask you to hear us, and beyond that to listen to us when we tell you we will not be having our jobs taken away and given to robots. We will not have you take away our right to work and earn a decent living. And lastly, and most importantly, we will not allow you to take away our dignity."

"Our industry has changed exponentially. We are not in the same business model that we were even 10 years ago.

"And yet, even though they admit that that is the truth in today's economy, they are fighting us tooth and nail to stick to the same economic system that is outmoded, outdated. They want us to step back in time. We cannot and we will not do that."

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